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The Lost City (R)

Release Date: April 28h, 2006 (Landmark Sunshine and AMC Empire 25) by Magnolia Pictures.
The Cast: Andy Garcia, Tomas Milian, Steven Bauer, Inés Sastre, Millie Perkins, Elizabeth Peña, Enrique Murciano, Nestor Carbonell, Victor Rivers, Julio Oscar Mechoso, William Marquez, Jsu Garcia, Dominik García-Lorido, Richard Bradford, Gonzalo Menendez, Juan Fernández, Bill Murray, Dustin Hoffman. Tony Plana.
Directed by Andy Garcia.

BASIC PREMISE: During the late 195’s, Fico (Garcia), a Havana nightclub owner, refuses to face the consequences of Fidel Castro’s Communist Revolution.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: The Lost City suffers from an unfocused, messy plot that never really takes off. Fico uses his power and connections as a wealthy nightclub owner to stay in business as much as possible while the Communist Revolution takes place all around him. Meanwhile, his brothers, Ricardo (Murciano) and Luis (Carbonell), decide to fight in the revolution. A romance between Fico and Aurora (Sastre), Luis’ wife, feels too contrived to be believable. Director/co-writer Andy Garcia includes too many awkward and unnecessary scenes with an uneven pacing. For example, in a hilarious cameo, Bill Murray plays a comedy writer who just hangs around who has very little to do with the plot. Dustin Hoffman also briefly shows up as Meyer Lansky, a power gangster. The main problem with the screenplay is that Fico never really seems to be in great danger even though he should be. It’s easy to feel lost as to where the real conflict is and why you should care about Fico in the first place. Garcia gives a decent performance as usual, but his character is simply too one-dimensional. Musical dance numbers in the beginning and end add some flash and well-needed energy, but don’t seem to appropriately fit with the tone of the film as whole. At running time of 2 hours and 23 minutes, The Lost City overstays its welcome without holding enough of your attention.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: Unfortunately, none.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: An uneven, meandering plot with not enough conflict.


IN A NUTSHELL: Decent performances, but with a weak, unfocused script and awkward directing.


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